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Walt and Skeezix: Book Four: 1927-1928 Hardcover – April 13, 2010

5.0 out of 5 stars 7 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

After a delay of more than two years, the series collecting King’s long-running newspaper strip Gasoline Alley returns. The centerpiece is a suspenseful sequence in which a wealthy European aristocrat kidnaps Skeezix—the foundling left on Walt Wallet’s doorstep six years earlier—claiming to be the child’s natural father, culminating in a courtroom custody battle. But even more compelling is the homespun charm of the episodes that quietly portray the everyday domestic life of Walt; his new wife, Phyllis; and their endearing youngster. King’s drawing is simple but effective; it would fully blossom in the years to come, particularly in his elaborate Sunday pages. --Gordon Flagg

Review

“King's artwork continues to flower, and his flair for finding the affective kernel in each day of his characters' lives never flags.” ―Booklist

“The best Gasoline Alley strips provoke smiles of recognition more than laughter--they're small,happymoments preserved fromthe changes time brings about.” ―DOUGLAS WOLK, The Washington Post Book World

“The strips reflect an inventiveness on a par with masters like Winsor McCay and Will Eisner.” ―Entertainment Weekly

“Frank King's Gasoline Alley may be the best syndicated comic strip ever. Walt and Skeezix lovingly collects two years' worth of the strip.” ―Playboy

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Product Details

  • Series: Walt and Skeezix
  • Hardcover: 400 pages
  • Publisher: Drawn and Quarterly; 1 Reprint edition (April 13, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1897299397
  • ISBN-13: 978-1897299395
  • Product Dimensions: 7.2 x 1.6 x 10 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3.3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #590,360 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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By Neil Shapiro on May 17, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
It took so long for Book 4 to come out but it was certainly worth the wait. These Walt and Skeezix (Gasoline Alley) strips from the first years are fabulous. The artwork, the characterizations, the plot elements all are simply some of the best that have ever been in any strip. OK, publisher -- get to work on Book 5! Don't make us wait so long again. Oh, and go back to the paper you used in Books 1, 2 and 3. This new paper is a little too yellow in color, not impossible to get used to but it shouldn't be tinted any deeper than the paper was in the first three books. Meanwhile, for anyone wondering if comic strips this old can hold up -- these not only hold up but are a challenge to cartoonists of today to do even a fraction as well.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Frank King! If there'd be Mount Rushmore faces for cartoonists, those are the artists that should be up there! And this is a series that should be in every fan's shelf. I hope they'll continue it soon after this one.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
There's no doubt that Gasoline Alley is the greatest comic strip - at least in the early years - of all time. It is probably the only strip where the characters are real - so very real - and age. You can't say that about Stone Soup, LOA, Terry and the Pirates, Peanuts, Calvin and Hobbes, Beetle Bailey and all the others. King was fantastic story teller, artist and humanitarian and it shows in every panel. All four volumes plus the fantastic book of Sundays belong in everyone's collection of great books. Frank King must have been a warm and wonderful human being. GA is the best medicine for today's sick world.
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Format: Hardcover
Gasoline Alley is one of the longest running comic strips, and though the current version is a pale shadow of its former self, it was a true classic in its heyday. For whatever reason, the collections of the old strips go under the name "Walt and Skeezix" instead of "Gasoline Alley", which is okay since it's a more appropriate title; while the earliest strips dealt with the Alley, soon it became Walt & Skeezix who were the focus.

For those unfamiliar with previous volumes in the set, Walt was once a good-hearted bachelor who found a baby left on his doorstep back on Valentine's Day, 1921. He named this baby boy Skeezix and eventually adopted him. As Volume 4 (which takes place in 1927 & 1928) opens, Walt is now married to Phyllis Blossom and Skeezix is almost six.

The 1927 strips deal with a custody battle for Skeezix. While it has been determined in previous strips that Skeezix's biological mother was Madame Octave (the one who arranged for Skeezix to be found by Walt), this year deals with the father, Col. Henri Coda. Coda, who was never aware of Skeezix's existence till recently, sues to get the adoption overturned. It creates an interesting debate about the rights of biological versus adoptive parents, and though the final outcome is not really in doubt, it is a suspenseful and often emotional storyline.

1928 has it's own storylines, principally the arrival of Walt and Phyllis's baby, Corky. Legal expenses from his battle with Coda create financial woes for Walt, who takes a job working for Alley denizen Mr. Wicker. Also, this year introduces cousin Lora, a teenage girl who moves in with the family.
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